FORMER Newport County AFC favourite Frank Nouble and his Colchester United teammates were party-poopers at the Jobserve Community Stadium today, as Michael Flynn’s two-year anniversary as Exiles boss was marked by a well below-par performance from the visitors.

Nouble sealed United’s comfortable victory with a stunning second-half strike following Sammie Szmodics and Courtney Senior efforts before the break.

Flynn started his County reign with a win on the road at Crewe Alexandra, but this afternoon’s encounter will be remembered for all the wrong reasons.

Joss Labadie replaced the injured Matty Dolan in County’s midfield, the only change to the starting XI following the previous Saturday’s 2-0 defeat of Carlisle United.

There was also a new face on the visitors’ bench in the shape of winger Will Randall, who signed for County as a free agent before the game after being released by Wolves in January.

Two familiar faces to Exiles fans lined up for the hosts with right-back Ryan Jackson and striker Nouble going up against their former club.

It was the away side who created the first opening in front of goal, but Jamille Matt could only find the side netting with an effort from an acute angle inside 60 seconds.

The U’s went close to breaking the deadlock 15 minutes later, Tom Eastman’s header from Courtney Senior’s free-kick going just past the far post.

However, John McGreal’s men did take the lead soon after, although County weren’t happy with the decision to let the goal stand.

Jackson played a give-and-go with Nouble on the edge of the Exiles box but appeared to handle the ball under pressure from Dan Butler.

County seemed to stand still for a split second and Sammie Szmodics sneaked in to poke the ball past Joe Day.

Senior then a had a glorious chance to double the lead, only for Day to produce a superb save with his outstretched right leg with the U’s man bearing down on goal.

But on the stroke of half-time, and after a second quarter low on chances, Senior did make it 2-0, firing past Day from range.

Flynn’s special day wasn’t going well and the hosts should have put the game out of County’s reach early in the second period.

After Rene Gilmartin and the woodwork denied Labadie at one end, Senior forced Day into a save at the other.

The midfielder rather selfishly took the shot on when Szmodics was crying out for the ball unmarked in the middle.

Flynn made his first change before the hour with Harry McKirdy replacing Ade Azeez – McKirdy was on the wrong end of a cynical challenge by Eastman which earned the defender a booking.

County’s day then got even worse – all thanks to old boy Nouble.

His 63rd-minute strike was something special as the striker turned Dan Butler one way then the other before cracking a fierce shot into the top corner.

Randall and Tyreeq Bakinson were thrown on by Flynn in a bid to salvage something from the game.

But only the hosts really looked like troubling the scoreboard in the closing stages, with the impressive Senior firing just wide.

Colchester: Gilmartin, Jackson, Kent, Eastman, Vincent-Young, Stevenson, Szmodics (Chilvers 89), Senior (Eisa 82), Mandron, Norris, Nouble (Dickenson 69). Subs not used: Barnes, Prosser, Wright, Roberts.

County: Day, Poole, Demetriou, O’Brien (capt), Butler, Willmott, Labadie (Bakinson 78), Bennett, Azeez (McKirdy 53), Amond, Matt (Randall 70). Subs not used: Townsend, Pipe, Marsh-Brown, Sheehan.

Referee: Lee Collins

Attendance: 3,213 (141 County fans)